Known for his experimentation with genres, DJ Jai Vaswani releases his new album Death by Shoelaces on March 24

The Indian indie music scene is growing and how! Tonight, Bangalore will have the opportunity to listen to some new indie electronica music from DJ Jai Vaswani, more commonly known by his stage name, Nanok. His new album, Death by Shoelaces, releases on March 24. Known for his experimentation with genres, Nanok’s new album sees him jump deftly from house, to funk, to disco, and occasionally features heavy Indian elements.

Prior to his three-city album launch tour, he says: “I can’t wait to play in Bangalore. I’ve been there for gigs before so I know the people are warm and inviting. More importantly, they’re more responsive than other Indian cities to indie music.”

Having been in the scene for decade years now, Nanok has come a long way. “Ten years ago I started off as a DJ and the evolution into an artiste came much later but I’m glad it finally did. I’d always wanted to compose music and when I started producing more music, playing it to larger crowds and eventually finding that the shift was necessary as was inevitable, the change came about.”

“My music has also grown with me,” he says, adding, “The music I make has got a lot to do with the kind of music I listen to. For example, back then there was no dub step. Now we have so many more genres and sub genres. While my music constantly evolves, what doesn’t change is that I always add my character and colour to create these new sounds.”

The inspiration to make this album stemmed from the fact that he’d been pining to produce something disco and funk based. He recounts: “I’d composed the title track two years ago. I always liked it so much but didn’t really know how to release it. There couldn’t have been a better time than now!”

If you’re wondering about the significance of the name of the album, the artiste informs: “People are most likely to think of ‘Death by Chocolate’ when they hear the name of the album but honestly, it doesn’t really have a back story. It’s an idea I came up with when I made the track and it somehow stuck.”

Nanok is someone who loves to collaborate with other artistes and for the first track of his latest album, he got the renowned Dualist Inquiry on board. “I had composed this guitar piece for the intro track but I didn’t want to play it myself. Nobody could have done it better than Dualist Inquiry, I thought. I had a hobby guitarist, Avinash, join me on another track. Three vocalists have also been a part of this album. It’s so much fun learning from each other,” Nanok says.

Ask him to pick his favourite track from the album and for a minute you have the DJ-Producer tongue-tied. “It all depends on the track I’m working on. It automatically becomes my favourite but on completion of the album, if I really had to pick, it would be the title track which is simple yet so powerful,” he explains.

While he thinks composing music when there are no deadlines is so much easier, Nanok says: “Whether I’m making music for a gig or for an album, no matter the stress levels, I enjoy both because I’m passionate about what I do.”

Looking ahead, Nanok will be producing more music that he says, “won’t be limited to one domain. It could be for ads, films, just about anything. I want to grow within the scene and soon enough play internationally,” he concludes.

Death by Shoelaces will be available for free download on March 24. Catch Nanok at The Humming Tree, 12th Main, Indiranagar, tonight at 10. For details, call 9886651373.

NEETI SARKAR

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